School-aged children in the United States often spend a great deal of time with educators; some may ultimately spend more time with teachers and counselors than they do with their parents. As such, parents are forced into a position that they must trust that these educators will notify them if they notice concerning behavior, such as the expression of suicidal thoughts. Unfortunately, a wrongful death lawsuit recently filed in California accuses a school district, counselor and principal of negligence in the events leading up to a 12-year-old girl’s suicide.
Reports indicate that the girl texted a friend, indicating that she intended to kill herself in May 2018. The friend reportedly showed the text to a teacher who referred the matter to the principal. The principal then referred the matter to a school counselor. The parents of the 12-year-old girl claim that the counselor met with her once, asked her to fill out a questionnaire but did not follow up with her.
According to reports, both state and school policy require educators to notify parents if their child expresses suicidal thoughts. Had they been notified, the girls parents claim they could have sought counseling for her. They believe that if the appropriate steps had been followed, their daughter’s death could have been prevented.
Unfortunately, a California family is left facing life without their daughter, allegedly as a result of negligence. Many people who have lost a loved one due to such inaction choose to file a wrongful death lawsuit against those believed to be responsible. While a successfully presented case will do little to lessen their grief, a monetary award can reduce the stress they may experience over their ability to meet their financial responsibilities, allowing them to focus on confronting the tragedy that occurred.